Like any thriller author, I did my research before I wrote this blog. What are the titles of the previous posts: All things red and lovely (love), having a blast at Thrillerfest, and Virginity. What comes after all that? Sadly, if you’re not careful: Pregnancy.
Like pregnancy, my Thrillerfest experience started out with the sneaking feeling that I forgot something important and I wasn’t really ready. But Thrillerfest was happening regardless and I had signed up. The first morning, I checked in and got my badge, complete with a debut author button. But my book wasn’t due out for a year. Did I even belong here with all the other writers, all more famous and accomplished than I? Then other debut writers showed up at the registration desk and I forgot my worries. I had never met most of them, except online, but it was like a reunion of old friends as we sat around and talked about what to expect when you’re expecting.
The next pregnancy symptom: morning sickness. Technically the nausea was caused by fear of speaking on my first panel, but really, the feeling in the pit of my stomach was just the same. My moderator was encouraging, the audience enthusiastic and friendly so the nausea passed and I was able to concentrate on what I was there for: talking to others about my experiences as a new author. Next time I’ll bring ginger ale and crackers.
Weight gain was unavoidable. My poor book bag grew ever heavier. Practically every time I sat down, someone offered me a free book and I’ve never been able to resist a luscious free book. Or two. Or three. In fact, I overindulged so much that I didn’t fit in my…plane seat on the way home and had to ship back extra boxes of books. Appalling lack of control, really.
Most of all, though, Thrillerfest showed me all the possibilities open to me and the other first time parents…err..debut authors, as we were pampered and spoiled by more experienced ITW writers. We got friendly advice, emotional support and, I’m not making this up, free breakfast. I’m looking forward to this July, after my book makes its way into the world, when I too can sit on that big delivery table at the author breakfast and spend a few minutes talking about my own bundle of pages.
A TRACE OF SMOKE
Francine Mathews--A View From the Shadows
19 hours ago